By Grace Washington
Liberian born American pilot, Abner Yonly, recently made history by becoming the first and only Liberian to embark on a solo transatlantic flight in a single-engine aircraft, and successfully completed his journey from America to Liberia.
The remarkable adventure began on October 27, 2023, taking him through an inspiring route spanning Canada, Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Morocco, Senegal, and Sierra Leone, finally landing in his homeland, Liberia, on November 23, 2023.
Upon his arrival at Springs Payne Airfield, in Liberia, Yonly received a warm welcome from fellow Liberians, including members of the press, government officials, and a cultural dance crew. The celebration echoed nationwide, marking a historic moment in aviation and personal triumph for Yonly.
Expressing his joy and gratitude, Yonly, a Liberian-born aviator, shared his journey on social media. In a Facebook post on November 5, 2023, he detailed the challenges of flying solo across the North Atlantic, emphasizing the lack of sponsorship for his ambitious venture. Yonly acknowledged the support of his family, friends, and well-wishers, urging further assistance through a GoFundMe campaign. “Hi everyone, I am currently doing my lifelong dream of flying across the North Atlantic into Europe and then to Africa. It’s even crazier being done during winter, single pilot, single engine with no autopilot. I have no sponsorship and this trip is getting more expensive with each leg. I have created a gofundme with a link in my bio for you to please help make this dream become a reality. I have been flying and haven’t had the time to post videos, videos coming soon.”
Liberians worldwide took to social media to express their pride and joy in Yonly’s unprecedented accomplishment. Berenice Mulubah of C Liberia Clearly blog congratulated Yonly, stating, “Congratulations to Liberian descendant Abner Yonly for making a historic solo flight from North America to Liberia in a single-engine plane.” Glendy Jane Junius echoed the sentiment with a Facebook post, hailing Yonly as the “1st Black Pilot to Fly a Solo Engine Aircraft from America to Liberia.”
Yonly’s achievement resonated deeply within the Liberian community, inspiring many who celebrated his success as a testament to determination and ambition. The historic solo transatlantic flight by Abner Yonly stands as a beacon of achievement, making an indelible mark in both Liberian and black history.
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